Tips for healthy eating out of home

Tips for healthy eating out of home

 

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With today’s hectic lifestyles, most of us end up eating out at least once a week. That could mean grabbing a sandwich from the supermarket deli counter for lunch, ordering take-out for dinner, or splurging on a special meal at a favourite restaurant.

Some of the tips given in this Blog such as “Always have a good breakfast” might become hard to accomplish due to the lack of time especially during the morning before going to work. So we end up grabbing a yoghurt or just a cup of coffee to drink in the car.

Meals away from home make it harder to control ingredients, calories, and portions. This can be particularly challenging for people trying to lose weight. The following tips can help you enjoy eating out without abandoning your efforts to eat well, or even better, eating in without spending a lot of time preparing your healthy meals.

Ask how the food is prepared. Before you order, ask about ingredients and how the menu selections are prepared. Try to choose dishes made with whole grains, healthy oils, vegetables, and lean proteins. Meat that has been broiled, poached, baked, or grilled is a more health-conscious option than fried foods or dishes prepared with heavy sauces.

Ask for separate ingredients on the side. Especially when it comes to salads always order them with no dressing, because, as we have already mentioned in this Blog, dressings are usually prepared with a lot of sugar and unhealthy oils. Preparing your own dressing is always the best choice. Ask for: lemon or lime, olive oil, apple cider vinegar, balsamic oil (just remember balsamic oil and Worcestershire sauce contain a lot of sugar) Worcestershire sauce, mustard, salt, pepper, …

Look for less. Your eyes are the perfect instrument for sizing up portion sizes. Use your estimating techniques to size up the food on your plate.

1 thumb tip = 1 teaspoon of peanut butter, butter, or sugar

1 finger = 1 oz. of cheese

1 fist = 1 cup cereal, pasta, or vegetables

1 handful = 1 oz. of nuts or pretzels

1 palm = 3 oz. of meat, fish, or poultry

Plan on eating half your meal and take the rest home to enjoy for lunch or dinner the next day.

Order an extra side of veggies. Non-starchy vegetables, such as green beans, broccoli, asparagus, or summer squash, will help you fill up with low-calorie choices.

Think ahead. Learn important nutrition information ahead of time. Most fast-food chains provide calories, sodium, and fat content for their menu items. Check the web and specific websites for nutrition breakdowns. Many locations display posters with this type of nutrition information.

Order your food from acknowledged sources. Most cities already have these companies that deliver special food orders to your home or to your office. Some of them even have gourmet meals. Or, look for some neighbour or local business where you can buy your daily home-cooked meals.

Cook in advanced. Cooking during the weekend is fun for some people. If this is your case, always prepare more food so that you can eat the leftovers along the week, including breakfast. Another strategy could be cooking breakfast at night so that you would have a good breakfast before going to work or you could take it with you as well.

Look for fruits and vegetables you can bite. Buy apples, prunes, pears, bananas, grapes, peaches, cherry tomatoes, carrots, celery, zucchinis, and all those fruits and vegetables you don’t have to cut so you can always take them with you and eat them any time anywhere.

Include those prepared salads ready to eat in your grocery list. These are more expensive than buying the ingredients separately, but they will save tons of time. They come in a bag and are available in every supermarket.  

Most supermarkets also prepare their own fruit and/or vegetable salads, as well as fresh juices every day.  

Pay a visit to the frozen section.  Options come in hundreds.  From frozen vegetables to complete meals.  Always read the nutritional info. 

Some of the recipes in this Blog are tasty, easy, simple and fast to prepare. Give them a try!

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